Six people were shot dead this Friday in a small town in the rural US state of Mississippi, near Tennessee, local authorities said, adding that the suspect has already been arrested.
Mississippi Department of Public Safety spokesman Bailey Martin confirmed the deaths in Arkabutla, Tate County, in statements to the Associated Press.
Governor Tate Reeves’ office clarified that the person responsible was informed about the shooting and that a suspect was in custody.
“At this time, we believe he acted alone,” Reeves said in a statement, adding that the motive for the shooting “is not yet known.”
Tate County Sheriff’s Office Shannon Brewer also confirmed that a suspect was in custody.
A nearby primary school and secondary school were closed while the suspect was being sought, Coldwater Elementary School said on Facebook.
Shortly afterwards, in a second publication, the schools announced that the closure had been lifted and that “all students and staff were safe”.
This shooting in Mississippi is the sixth mass murder (in which four or more people are killed) in a three-week period, according to an Associated Press/USA Today database.
The small community of Arkabutla is about 50 kilometers south of Memphis, Tennessee, and is home to 285 residents, according to the latest census.